Training Camp Report: Jones, Sitton Taking Positive Approach With Injuries

Rookie guard Josh Sitton and wide receiver James Jones will both be out this week with the knee injuries they sustained Friday night in Denver, but will be two of several players focused on getting back on the field for the season opener vs. Minnesota. - More Mike McCarthy Press Conference Transcript - Aug. 25

Rookie guard Josh Sitton and wide receiver James Jones will both be out this week with the knee injuries they sustained Friday night in Denver, but will be two of several players focused on getting back on the field for the season opener vs. Minnesota.

Sitton, who started the first three preseason games at the right guard spot, is listed as "week-to-week" with the knee sprain, but said he is feeling better each day.

"If you let yourself get frustrated by something like this, it's just going to affect you when you get back," Sitton said. "I've got to look at the positives. It could have been worse and I'm going to be back this season. I'm just kind of going day to day with it and trying to get better."

Sitton, who entered training camp as a backup at guard, impressed the coaches early on and was given the opportunity to earn the starting right guard position once injuries began to cause some shuffling along the line.

"I'm pleased with my performance and obviously I feel there is room for improvement," Sitton said. "I believe there is room for improvement in every part of my game. I think I have gotten better at many things. I try to take coaching and listen to them and do what they say, and just improve a little bit per day on each thing, and that's what I have been doing."

Jones' injury was initially believed to be a knee bruise but further testing also revealed a sprain. He said he was relieved that it wasn't serious and anticipates being ready the Packers' game Sept. 8 against the Vikings.

"I'll get all of the treatment I can this week and I'll be back out there next week," Jones said. "It's still preseason. I've still got time to recover and be back for Monday night.

"It's going to help me out and make my knee stronger. My legs will be a little fresh, and I can get out there and make some plays."

Respite for Rodgers

With starting quarterback Aaron Rodgers expected to get very limited work on Thursday, the Packers' rookie backups, Brian Brohm and Matt Flynn, took the vast majority of the reps in the final padded practice of camp on Monday.

"They are doing a pretty good job," Rodgers said. "I thought Matt had a really good practice today and Brian did a great job in the two-minute drill.

"Tom (Clements) is a great quarterback coach. He has got great advice and little tidbits to think about, and then I will pull them aside and say, 'Hey, this is what I am thinking about on this play,' after Tom talks to them. I think this will be a big week for them."

Both young quarterbacks have had their ups and downs during the preseason, but McCarthy said that is to be expected and has been pleased with what he has seen from both to this point.

"I hate to sound like a broken record here, but it's a process," McCarthy said. "It takes time. You talk to anybody that has ever played the position; I am not disappointed at all with the path and the progress that these two young players have made.

"I am very happy with what I see. They'll continue to get better, and that's the most important thing. They need reps, they need to play in games, and that's why we'll try to get them as many opportunities as we possibly can this Thursday against Tennessee."

A challenging finale

The Packers will finish off their preseason slate with the Titans for the seventh consecutive season on Thursday night, and Tennessee's approach to the finale should provide for a highly competitive environment for Green Bay's backups battling for the final spots on the 53-man roster.

The Packers' starters will most likely play only a series or two, and a handful of starters will miss the game due to injury. Tennessee has traditionally placed an emphasis on the fourth and final preseason game, and their first units could see action into the third quarter.

"It's a great opportunity for our young guys, and really, preseason to me is about finding out as much information as you possibly can, not only about your team but about the individuals," McCarthy said. "This will give us a great look at a lot of guys that are fighting for jobs."

Injury/participation update

Defensive end Cullen Jenkins and defensive tackle Johnny Jolly returned to practice after sitting out on Sunday.

Remaining out on Monday in addition to Jones and Sitton were center Scott Wells (trunk), linebacker A.J. Hawk (chest), linebacker Brandon Chillar (back), safety Atari Bigby (ankle), cornerback Charles Woodson (knee), safety Charlie Peprah (hamstring), and defensive tackle Ryan Pickett (hamstring).

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